Key Paths

  • In July and August 2020, NYC-certified dermatologists, mainly in the city’s Hispanic and Latino communities, saw a 400% increase in telegenic fluvium (hair loss).
  • Telogen effluvium is usually triggered by stress and occurs 2 to 4 months after the traumatic event — related to the March COVID-19 case in New York.
  • Experts believe that there is a link between epidemics and hair loss.

In a paper published earlier this month, board-certified dermatologists from New York City showed a 400% increase in hair loss in the city’s Hispanic and Latino populations over the summer.This is a new sign that the epidemic is severe in some people after the outbreak in New York in March, as this phenomenon could occur in the months after the traumatic event.

The study published in Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, He reported a number of hair loss cases at dermatology clinics in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Shosha and Marmon, MD. , PhD, Faad

It is clear that minority-dominated communities have been severely affected by this epidemic.

– Shosha and Marmon, MD. , PhD, Faad

The clinics usually treated low-income, non-white people. The areas where the clinics were used reported that some of the highest COVID-19 deaths and infections in the NCC were reported.

Author Shoshana Marmon, MD, PhD, FAAD, a board-certified dermatologist and director of clinical research at New York Medical College’s Department of Dermatology, said it was clear that communities affected by the epidemic were disproportionately affected. . “Since this type of hair loss is associated with high physiological and / or emotional stress, I expect the number of TE cases in these severe areas to be higher than the general population.

What is TE?

TE is a type of hair loss that occurs two to four months after the onset of serious events, such as childbirth, chronic illness, serious surgery, or serious infection.

A person with TE may begin to notice large amounts of hair on a pillow, in a bathtub, or on a hairbrush. The hair on the head may look thin, but TE occasionally causes bald spots.

Of the hairs on your head, 90-95% are in the growth phase (anagan) and only 5-10% in the telogen phase.

“Severe stress or illness, such as covad-19, can shock the hair follicles,” says Marmon. During the delay (two to four months), people are often unaware that stressful events and hair loss are related.

TE is usually diagnosed with a physical examination and a medical history. Marmon says that a “hair-pulling” test is used by the clinic to measure the number of hairs that are released by gently pulling on the hair follicles.

Regarding the long-term effects, some medical hair loss conditions can cause scarring, swelling or baldness, Marmon says, and these effects do not usually occur with TE.

How common is TE?

A 2020 study from the Sampson Regional Medical Center in North Carolina found that people of all ages, genders, or races could be infected.Although the exact distribution is unknown, many adults develop TE at some point in their lives. Women are more likely to get tested because they are more likely to get treatment.

During the pre-epidemic years, a recent study found that NCC clinics report only about 7.5 cases of TE every two months — and never in men. However, In July and August 2020 (four months after the first CV-19 cases hit the United States), clinics reported 43 TE cases, 5 of which were in men. Most of the issues were in the Hispanic / Latin communities.

“Patients notice this when they wash or adjust their hair,” says Marmon. She reports that patients sometimes have curly hair, which can be very stressful.

Can COVID-19 TE cause?

TE can be caused by an illness or disease, which may be a side effect of the COVID-19 recovery process. However, more information is needed to confirm the direct link between COVID-19 and TE.

At the beginning of the epidemic, there was a severe shortage of experiments in New York, ”said Marmon. However, based on what we have just seen, it looks like you are infected with COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not list hair loss as a COVID-19 marker.Dermatologists at Cleveland Clinic are seeing TE in people with COVID-19 and non-infected people.

In fact, in addition to being infected with COVID-19, stress factors such as financial stress, anxiety for loved ones, social isolation, fear of being infected, and changes at work and school can also cause hair loss.

What does this mean for you?

If you notice that your hair is falling out more than usual, it could be a condition called telogen influenza (TE), which may be related to a stressful event you experienced months ago.

TE is temporary and usually resolves within six months until the root cause is resolved. In the meantime, you should continue with your daily hair care and see a board-certified dermatologist who can diagnose, treat and manage your hair.

Can TE be treated?

Once the cause is determined, TE usually disappears on its own within six months. Meanwhile, people should follow regular hair care, including styling and bathing.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, eating healthy, nutritious food helps the TE administration. Studies also show that taking iron-rich multivitamins and using 5% of the FDA approved minoxidil may help relieve symptoms.

The information in this article is up-to-date, which means new information may be available as you read it. Visit our Coronavirus News page for the latest updates on COVID-19.